Paper long abstract:
After a prolonged transitional recession that undermined the ability of the Kazakh system of early childhood education (ECE) to serve population, private alternatives to the state-run ECE proliferated in 2010-17. Growth of private ECE organizations is highly uneven across Kazakh provinces. The paper explores how changes in social and regulatory policy between the early 1990s and 2017 affected the provision of early childhood education in Kazakhstan. Comparative analysis of province-level facilities, enrollment, and staffing data reveals three distinct explanatory components of good performance: labor demand, effective mechanisms of state financing, and the ease of doing business. The paper finds that regulatory specificity associated with implementing the state policy towards the ECE at the local level significantly improves the development of private ECE centers. This suggests that more attention should be given to the policy implementation mechanisms because faulted implementation often undermines the state education policy initiatives.
Schooling and Social Issues